Tribunal’s Verdict: From Gov To Acting Gov, Udom Reacts

Tribunal’s Verdict: From Gov To Acting Gov, Udom Reacts

Despite the Election Petitions Tribunal ordering a re-run governorship election in 18 out of the 31 local government areas in Akwa Ibom, the state government has insisted Udom Emmanuel is still the governor of the state.


In a statement by Aniekan Umanah, the state commissioner for information and communication, the Akwa Ibom state government decried information circulating in some section of the media that Udom Emmanuel is now an acting governor of the state., The Sun reports.

Tribunal’s Verdict: From Gov To Acting Gov, Udom Reacts
Governor Udom Emmanuel

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Umanah said: “It is unfortunate that a section of the media are unaware of the salient provisions of the 1999 Constitution regarding election and inauguration of governor of a state, talk-less of the 2011 Electoral Act.

“The Akwa Ibom Governorship Election Petitions Tribunal, which sat in Abuja directed Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) to conduct a rerun election in 18 local government areas of the state within 90 days, this does not mean that the office of the governor is vacant, as the tribunal also confirmed Emmanuel as governor.

“The Electoral Act specifically provides that in a situation such as we have now, the governor remains in office until he exhausts all appeal windows available to him. The Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) that sponsored the governor has indicated its intention to appeal the judgment of the tribunal. While the case runs its course, the governor remains in office, contrary to the falsehood by a segment of the press, serving the interest of the opposition.”

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Udom had been declared by the INEC as the winner in the April 11 governorship election alleged to be the most controversial in the history of elections in the country.

It was reported that the election was allegedly marred with violence, harassment of voters, hijacking of election materials and unprecedented rigging which made international and local observers to pass  a unanimous verdict that it was a sham and recommended a complete cancellation of the exercise.

The APC which is the main opposition in the state also came out strongly to decry the conduct of the exercise.

The APC said there was no election in the state as it accused the former governor Godswill Akpabio who is now a minority leader at the Senate, of allegedly deploying state machinery to rig the election and overturn the popular wish of the people.

As a result of this, the APC and its candidate, Umana Okon Umana, had to challenge the victory at the tribunal seeking a cancellation of the purported election.


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